Italian Immigrants Holiday Traditions Essay

1421 words - 6 pages

Americans have become so accustomed to holiday traditions today that the meaning of how they arrived here has been lost. Immigrants of Italy brought to America their family-centered culture of celebrating these holidays. Their culture was so influencing that villages for the Italians were actually formed. The Italians celebrated numerous holidays in Italy; most celebrations included their fine foods and wine. Although, after the immigrants arrived in America they no longer observed many of the holidays that they did in Italy.

The Italians’ holiday culture helped to make America a more diverse nation. Their family-centered culture and regional affiliations resulted in highly concentrated ...view middle of the document...

The immigrants had the best chefs in the world prepare food for their festivities. Holidays and festivals were extremely important to the Italian people, but they were especially proud of their harvest season. Little Italy’s all over the world held parades and festivals in the fall months to celebrate the good harvest. This celebration was also for the upcoming wine and winter season. It was a time for the people to enjoy the fruits of their labors and feast to celebrate an end to the hard work season ("Italian_Immigration"). Another occasion celebrated with glorious food was St. Joseph’s Day on March nineteenth. The day was remembered by building a temporary three-tiered altar and flourishing it with food offerings for the saints. Breads, cannolis, seafood, and vegetable dishes all decorated the altar. Several other dishes included the food, mudriga, also known as St. Joseph’s sawdust. This tasteful food was made of only bread crumbs and sugar. No meat was ever found on the altar because the holiday almost always fell during Lent ("Countries and Their Cultures”) .

Moreover, the importance of food to the Italians on the holidays set them apart from other Americans. Their customs of feasts and parades are very valued to the immigrants heritage. They enjoyed feasting during celebrations or during summertime street festivals honoring patron saints. However, once the immigrants arrived in America they stopped observing certain holidays and attempted to follow American traditions. This task was a challenge considering they didn’t want to halt honoring their customs as well (Countries and Their Cultures").

Besides bringing their unique holiday food customs to America, Italian immigrants also brought over new holidays. Most Italian holidays now are no longer celebrated or receive only a passing notice. One of the major national holidays of Italy, Festa della Republica, on June fifth, is no longer an occasion of public celebration by the Italians. Festa della Republica commemorated the institutional referendum of 1946. The Italian population was gathered to decide what form of government the country should obtain once World War II ended. After eighty-five years of monarchy and with only a two million vote difference, Italy became a Republic. This holiday was one of the most important for the Italian immigrants. It is equal to America’s celebration of the Fourth of July. It is also celebrated similarly with music, dancing, and fireworks ("Countries and Their Cultures"). This was an important holiday for the Italian immigrants to celebrate while other religious holidays such as, Epifania di Gesù, on January sixth, wasn’t as significant. This holiday was based on the story of the three wise men who offered Jesus gifts of gold, myrrh, and frankincense. It was an important part of the Christmas festivities in Italy. On this day, the immigrants celebrated a feast known as La Befana, which originated from a story of a woman who flew around on a broomstick...

Find Another Essay On Italian Immigrants Holiday Traditions

Albanian Immigration to Italy During the 1900's

1614 words - 7 pages , Portocannone, Uriri and Chieuti form a geographical continuum of the vitality of Albanian dialects (Perta). The 1980s and 1990s saw a decreasing interest in the Italo-Albanian dialect of Arbëreshë and Albanian culture as a whole. Instead of continuing to practice Albanian traditions, this wave of Albanian immigrants who came in the late 1900’s introduced “Italian into all layers of society and the massive spread of secondary education, of media and of all

Significance of Chistmas Essay

6693 words - 27 pages that Christmas had become too commercial.Christmas also gained new importance among urban residents. Cities became crowded with immigrants, who introduced a wide variety of religious and cultural practices to North American life. Celebrating Christmas emerged as a way for people from different parts of the world to create a sense of community in the city. The holiday forged a broad, nondenominational sense of Christian spirit while promoting an

Italian Culture and Society

1398 words - 6 pages , 2014). People of the Italian culture are very proud of their way of life and do not see any need to change it. Certain traditions that Italians have lived by for hundreds of years are still maintained with provincial pride due to the fact that this community is so closely knit to their ancestors and the way life was lived before them. There is basis on which the Italian culture can be viewed as a single group of people. That basis would be

Italians In America Before 1914

1196 words - 5 pages fit in with the American kids. It was very common to see an Italian child deny his or her heritage. Of course their parents were very angry with this. The Italian parents wanted their children to keep the Italian traditions going, but the children wanted nothing to do with it. Many fights raged between the generations, but they all remained Catholic. The Italians came to America bringing all of the heritage and traditions, so of course

Colombian Culture VS American culture

912 words - 4 pages and celebrated during carnivals and cultural festivities as the carnival of Blacks and whites in Pasto, the Manizales Fair, the Barranquilla Carnival, the Medellin Flower Fair, the Cali Fair, the Biennial Bogotá International Theater Festival and the Colombian Folkloric Festival in Ibague. United States celebrate holidays due to events in the history of America and Christian traditions. Thanksgiving is the main day of traditional American holiday

My Families' Italian Emigration

887 words - 4 pages disasters. Thousands of people were killed due to an earthquake and tidal wave. Volcanic eruptions were destroying towns (Gliah 1). Like my grandmother, the majority of Italian immigrants to the United States came from Southern Italy (Marist 1). My grandmother, Carmela Cennamo, immigrated to the United States in 1934 from Naples, Italy. She was one of many family members to immigrate to this country. Her brother and cousin were already here

America: For the New Kid on the Block

2138 words - 9 pages . Gingerbread cookies and roast turkeys may be universal symbols of the American holiday season, but they don’t adequately represent the fact that each region or culture within the United States has its own holiday food traditions. For instance, in the African-American culture, families will generally get together at a family member’s home during the holiday season (Christmas & Kwanzaa) and the older generation will share stories about their upbringing


1738 words - 7 pages culture, however, was strongly influenced by African, Indigenous cultures and traditions, and other non-Portuguese European people. Some aspects of Brazilian culture are contributions of Italian, German and other European immigrants. Amerindian peoples influenced Brazil's language and cuisine; and the Africans influenced language, cuisine, music, dance and religion.Brazil's is famous in their culture because of their sports, beaches and carnivals.In

Irreligious Catholics and Their Potential Threat to the Process of Socialization

1740 words - 7 pages American culture. Byrne also adds that Italian immigrants that clung to their “Old World traditions” often embarrassed the Irish Catholic immigrants (2). Similarly, the Italian immigrants also felt that the Irish were trying to demolish a part of socialization that allowed Italians’ to transmit cultural traditions to their offspring. Eventually, the second generations of Catholic immigrants started to reject Catholicism due to the tremendous amount

Ewen's Immigrant Women in the Land of Dollars

1250 words - 5 pages , even though to the American many of these activities would seem restrictive or a barrier to the betterment of immigrant life. The struggle and isolation were forgotten for a moment as "new immigrants found ways to maintain culture and create community" (Ewen, 226). As many Americans looked on with disapproval, there still arose a clash between parents who wanted to preserve the traditions of the old country while the younger generation wanted

The Republic of Djibouti

993 words - 4 pages ) History Immigrants from Arabia (the Afars) populated this region 300 years B.C.T, Somalis arrived soon after and the Islamic religion did not enter the region until 825 A.C.T. During the 19th century Djibouti became a French Territory, and it wasn’t until 1977 that it gained independence and became a republic (Alwan, Mibrathu, p. 133-136). Before becoming a colonized nation, the Somali and Afar tribes of the region were nomadic pastoralists

Similar Essays

Italian Immigration Essay

1339 words - 6 pages son would go before the whole family. Leaving the mother and the rest of the family behind until the father and son could afford their passage. In 1895 New York Times provided a good source of information showing the progress of the immigration at the turn of the century. The article says: Of the 500,000 Italian immigrants that are in the United States, around 100,000 live in the city, including those who live in Brooklyn. About a third of the

Our Italian Tradition Essay

2362 words - 9 pages embraces during the Christmas holiday. My mother was born in the southern part of Italy, in the city of Calabria. In 1957, her family sailed across the Atlantic Ocean aboard the Christopher Columbus, to the United States of America. Continuing life as they did in Italy, my mother’s family carried on many Italian traditions. By growing all of their own fruits and vegetables, they prepared all of their meals from scratch. Their house contained a

The Impact On America Of Turkish, Greek And Italian Immigrants And Their Respective Cultures

1591 words - 6 pages biggest grossing movies in American culture would not have been possible without the influence of both first-generation immigrants as well as subsequent generations.? The traditions of various cultures, especially Italian, Greek, and Turkish cultures are evident in the history of the American movie.? Our diet is also largely comprised of ethnic foods, particularly Italian.? The various places of worship available to parishioners also exemplify the

Children Immigrants Essay

2031 words - 8 pages . They worked in their own homes or in sweatshops to help out their families. Both children immigrants were educated in some way. Whether it was from their families with family traditions or if it was from public schooling. Work Cited Page Waltzer, Kenneth ?The Italian Girl in Chicago.? (1909) Chicago/Italian/At work. American Identity Explorer: Immigrations and CD-ROM. New York: McGraw-Hill/Primis, 1998. ?Educating the Jewish Young People